Philippines – First wind farm in Southeast Asia starts operations next month

First 70-metre, 1.6-megawatt (MW) wind turbine erected two weeks ago

The first wind farm in Southeast Asia, located in Bangui Bay in Ilocos Norte, is set to be commissioned by April 30 following the establishment of the first of the 15 wind turbines that will compose the entire wind farm. The first 70-meter, 1.6-megawatt (MW) wind turbine was erected two weeks ago, paving the way for the establishment of the remaining 14 turbines. It took three days to raise the first wind turbine. The remaining 14 turbines could each be erected in 12 hours, during winds of less than 8 meters per second, estimates showed. Starting May, the 25-MW wind farm will already provide electricity to customers of the Ilocos Norte Electric Cooperative (Inec).

The first wind farm in the country and in Southeast Asia is a project of Filipino-Danish consortium Northwind Power Development Corp. Constructing the wind farm on a turnkey basis is Danish wind turbine manufacturer Vestas Wind Systems A/S. Financing for the $44-million project came from a mixture of soft loans and grants from Danish development bank Danida. The project cost covers not only the actual construction of the wind turbines, but also the rehabilitation of a 57-kilometer long transmission line linking the wind farm to Inec's substation in Laoag City.

Apart from the Northwind project, several wind farm projects are now in various stages of development. The state-run Philippine National Oil Co.-Energy Development Corp. will start constructing a 40-MW wind farm in Burgos, Ilocos Norte, later this year. Smith Bell Resco will also be setting up a 30-MW wind farm in San Carlos City, Negros Occidental. Environmental group Worldwide Fund for Nature (WWF), together with some partners from the private sector, are likewise developing two wind farms in Northern Panay.
Online editorial www.windfair.net
Trevor Sievert, Online Editorial Journalist
Philippines, Vestas, Inec, wind energy, wind power, renewable energy, wind farm, wind turbine, rotor blade, onshore, offshore

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